The sweet treat wreaked rotten havoc.
Scotland mother Victoria Anderson was thunderstruck with fear when her 3-year-old son became “intoxicated” and collapsed in a state of unconsciousness after gulping down a raspberry-flavored frosty drink.
And now, the rattled mom of five is issuing a warning to parents worldwide about the deadly dangers of slushies.
“Angus had never had a slushy before. This was his first time,” explained Anderson, 29, from Glasgow, to Kennedy News of the harrowing Jan. 4 incident. “I was scared he would die.”
The millennial mother innocently purchased the icy beverage for little Angus during a family shopping trip.
Over the summer, the tot had witnessed his brothers enjoying the juicy snack — comprised of crushed ice and fruity syrups — and asked his mom to buy him a chilly cup from a local corner store.
When Angus began groaning in agony and begging to go home minutes after slurping the reddish refreshment, Anderson assumed the preschooler was merely cranky.
“We walked around the shop a bit more, and as I turned around, I could hear him moaning again,” she recalled. “I thought he’d thrown himself on the floor having a temper tantrum.
“But when I looked, his eyes were at the back of his head, and he was having a seizure. He went limp as anything,” said Anderson, who yowled a desperate cry for help.
“I started screaming, ‘Somebody get me an ambulance!’” recounted the mother. “I thought I’d lost him. His body went stone cold.”
Paramedics sped to Angus’ aid.
After quickly determining that the boy’s blood sugar levels had severely dropped, first responders rushed him to Glasgow Children’s Hospital.
Anderson anxiously waited for the doctor’s prognosis.
“He was unconscious for about two hours. It was the scariest thing I’d ever experienced,” she said. “He was well that day — there was nothing obviously wrong with him. There’s nothing like this in the family.”
The distraught mother’s fears heightened when Angus remained totally unresponsive after physicians jabbed him in the leg with a syringe.
Thankfully, the tyke was eventually revived.
“When he woke up, he was still going in and out of consciousness. I think he was exhausted too,” Anderson remembered.
“[Doctors] asked what he’d eaten and drank that day, and I told them about the slushy,” she said. “The doctors said the slushy had caused glycerol toxicity.”
Glycerol is an alcohol produced by the hydrolysis of triglycerides or as a byproduct during the manufacture of soap and biodiesel, according to the American Chemical Society. The simple compound has a sweet taste and can be used as a food preservative or sweetener.
Over the summer, the Food Standards Agency of Scotland issued an advisory about glycerol in slush-ice drinks, counseling merchants not to sell them to children younger than 4.
The agency found that at very high levels of exposure, glycerol intoxication can cause shock, hypoglycemia and loss of consciousness.
Anderson was stunned to learn of the hidden poison in the beverage that nearly claimed her son’s life.
“It’s not something I’d ever heard of before,” she said of the chemical-induced toxicity. “[But] there was definitely a link to the slushy.”
The child advocate for change is pushing for the dessert drink’s barring.
“I think slushies should be banned altogether or at the very least there needs to be a warning sign for [children under age 4],” said Anderson. “But this could potentially happen to any kid of any age.
“I’ll never buy slushies again. You just don’t know what’s in these drinks,” she said. “I just want to make as many moms aware as possible what can happen buying these drinks.”